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View Full Version : Teen Abuse Of Cold Medicine On The Rise

03-23-2004, 08:33 PM
There's a growing trend among teenagers that involves the abuse of a drug that is not only accessible, but also relatively common in almost anyone's medicine cabinet.

Teenagers looking for a new high are turning to over-the-counter cold medications --- like Coricidin and Robitussin Maximum Strength cough syrup -- containing the drug Dextromethorphan. On the street, they call it -- "DXM," "Dexing," "Robotripping," "Skittling," "Red paint," or "Triple C."

"You kind of take eight pills," an unidentified teenage user told KTVU. "It's basically like getting stoned. You lose sense of your mind and you just...it's fun."

Dextromethorphan can be found in 120 over-the-counter products in any pharmacy or drug store. Some teenagers don't even have to buy it because it's in their medicine cabinet at home. And their parents are the unknowing suppliers.

"Parents don't realize what's going on," said Sgt. Wayne Benitez, of the Palo Alto Police Department. "We're dealing with a drug, that's legal to purchase, legal to obtain, and legal to take."

Legal and -- if you use the recommended dosage for coughs and colds -- safe. But it is potentially dangerous and deadly if you do what some teens are doing. They aren't just doubling the recommended dosage; they are tripling it and taking even more.

"I took 13 at one time," said Spencer, a recovering addict. "It just makes you trip out heavily. It's not even that great of a high. In a way, it made me feel as if, tar or oil was in my veins."

Teenagers can search the Internet and find out how much to take depending on the high -- called plateaus -- they are trying to achieve.

"Depending on the dosage taken, they can get four distinct trips," Benitez said. "At the lower level they can get a mild intoxicating effect, and at the upper end, they have LSD hallucinations and that's where death occurs."

Dextromethorphan affects the cardiovascular and nervous system. An overdose can cause drowsiness, seizures, convulsions, hallucinations, irregular heartbeats, heart attacks and death. In the last two years, at least five deaths have been attributed to cold medications nationwide.

Clinical pharmacists at the California Poison Control Center in San Francisco say children as young as 12 are abusing Dextromethorphan. Health officials say abuse is on the rise, not only because it's easy to obtain, but also it's also easy to hide from parents.

"We've seen a continued rise from the year 2000 until today," said Dr. Ilene Anderson, of the California Poison Control Center. "The calls to the poison center on this topic have more than tripled."

Poison center officials say there are many more cases that go unreported. Palo Alto police told KTVU they became concerned after a 14-year-old girl took 15 tablets during a suicide attempt, and a 15-year-old boy had a mild heart attack after drinking large amounts of Robitusson and taking Coricidin tablets.

Complete Story Here: http://www.ktvu.com/station/2860457/detail.html

Infected Method
03-23-2004, 08:36 PM
Red paint. Oh god.
Sounds like everytime one of these articles is released, they seem to be pulling names out of their ass.

Whats next?
Red Bull? Red Cherry?

Hey, I actually like that name..
Red Cherry.

Haha, Im actually gonna start using that among my friends.
"Red Cherry" :sly:

03-23-2004, 08:44 PM
recovering addict, eh? ... lol.

03-23-2004, 11:17 PM
How does one become addicted to the feeling of tar or oil in their veins?

I'd just like to know that.

Sometimes I think stupid kids say stupid things about drugs and how they feel so bad because they took drugs (and yet so addictive) because that is what they think prohibitionists want them to say.